letters to surfers

I have been taught we need to complete the work of evangelism in all the world before the Lord's return. You seem to have a different view. Could you explain.

by Robert Brow   (www.brow.on.ca)

In the synoptic Gospels the coming of the Lord is nothing to do with our work of evangelism. He will come to execute judgment on the Jerusalem religious establishment in that generation. Here is what Matthew wrote:

"The Son of Man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay everyone for what he has done. Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste of death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom" (16:27).

When the owner of the vineyard (the Messiah) comes, what will he do to those tenants? (the Pharisees and Sadducee teachers)   They said to him, "He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and leave the vineyard to others" (21:40-41).

"Upon you (the Pharisees) may come all the righteous blood shed. . . all this will come upon this generation" (23:35-36, as in Mark 13:30, Luke 21:32).

"What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age? . . . As the lightning comes from the east, and flashes as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures (Roman legion eagles, as in Luke 21:20) will gather . . . this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place" (24:3, 28, 34, as in Luke 21:32).

In relation to the proclamation of the good news to the nation, there is one going out into the Roman world (Paul and other apostles) before the fall of Jerusalem (24:14). After the fall of Jerusalem the Gentile churches will then take the good news out to the four winds (24:31, as in 8:11). The great commission (28:19) is to be obeyed, but the Lord's coming in the fall of Jerusalem (AD 70) will happen as prophesied long before all nations are evangelized.

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